Latest in Sanctions

Federal Law Enforcement

What Happens If the Trump Administration Designates Drug Cartels as Terrorist Organizations?

The move would allow the president to implement several criminal and financial penalties against those groups and their members—but the measures will not necessarily help the federal government combat the cartels. 

Trade and Security

The Legal Authority Behind Trump’s New Tariffs on Mexico

On May 30, the White House announced yet another new policy aimed at addressing the purported crisis of unlawful immigration across the U.S.-Mexico border. President Trump’s statement proposes a dramatic new strategy—putting tariffs on U.S. imports from Mexico unless and until Mexico takes steps to reduce illegal immigration into the United States:

Sanctions

The U.S. Names the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a Terrorist Organization and Sanctions the International Criminal Court

On April 8, the Trump administration designated the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a foreign terrorist organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act. A few days earlier, the administration had made good on its threat to impose sanctions on officials of the International Criminal Court (ICC) involved in the examination of U.S. actions in Afghanistan and Israeli actions in other contexts. As part of this effort, it revoked the U.S. visa of Fatou Bensouda, the ICC’s chief prosecutor.

Sanctions

Congress Should Staff Up the Office of Foreign Assets Control

Those familiar with the hard work done by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) are likely to agree that this small agency with a big responsibility for implementing U.S. sanctions deserves more money and staff. While various reports have highlighted the office’s lack of resources, most of the attention to date has focused on the staffing of sanctions programs for key national security priorities such as Iran and North Korea.

Sanctions

How Securities Law Can Help the U.S. Counter INSTEX

On Jan. 31, the governments of France, Germany and the United Kingdom formally announced the establishment of the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX), a Special Purpose Vehicle dedicated to facilitating trade between European economic actors and Iran. The creation of INSTEX by the three countries—known as the E3—followed months of negotiations in the wake of the United States’s 2018 exit from the Iran nuclear deal.

Sanctions

Lifting of Treasury Sanctions on Deripaska Highlights Role for Congress in Foreign Affairs Decisions

On Dec. 19, the Trump administration notified Congress that in 30 days it would lift sanctions on several companies connected with sanctioned Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska: aluminum giant Rusal and two related entities named EN+ and EuroSibEnergo (ESE). The relief comes after the companies agreed to reduce Deripaska’s ownership in the companies below 50 percent and make other organizational and governance changes to diminish Deripaska’s control.

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